Malaysian king wants ‘new politics’ that bring peace and harmony: Anwar after royal audience on next PM
KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysian political parties have reached a consensus to stop old politics, said opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim on Tuesday (Aug 17), adding that the ruler has called for the party leaders to move towards “new politics” that bring peace and harmony for the people.
Speaking to reporters after meeting with King Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri'ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah, Mr Anwar said that all political party leaders were reminded to stay united in the face of the COVID-19 crisis.
Mr Anwar said that besides finding a prime minister candidate which has the majority support of MPs in parliament, the king stressed that there has to be a shift to “new politics”.
Under the new form of politics, those who achieved victory cannot oppress those who have lost, like what has happened, he said.
"Therefore there needs to be a mobilisation of efforts from all parties, with a new understanding, a new consensus to work together to handle COVID-19 and lift the country's economy again," he added.
There was a consensus among those present at the royal audience to stop old politics that are “tiring and boring”, said Mr Anwar.
“The issue is not just about the appointment of a new prime minister, but more importantly - as emphasised by the king and deputy king - to move towards a form of new politics that is more peaceful and harmonious for the people,” he added.
Mr Anwar was flanked by Democratic Action Party secretary-general Lim Guan Eng and Parti Amanah Negara president Mohamad Sabu.
Earlier on Tuesday, political party leaders headed to the national palace for a royal audience, as the king began the process to identify a new prime minister following Mr Muhyiddin Yassin’s resignation.
Among those who were seen entering the palace were United Malays National Organisation president Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia secretary-general Hamzah Zainudin, Parti Islam Se-Malaysia deputy president Tuan Ibrahim Tuan Man and Parti Pejuang Tanah Air president Mukhriz Mahathir.
Separately, all MPs have also been asked to submit a declaration letter to state an individual they support to be the next prime minister by 4pm on Wednesday.
A clear successor to Mr Muhyiddin has yet to emerge. The contenders need to convince the ruler that they likely command majority support of the Lower House, which currently has 220 MPs and two vacant seats.
The Perikatan Nasional coalition, which was led by Mr Muhyiddin before his resignation after losing his razor-thin parliamentary majority, has about 100 MPs, according to the Star.
The Pakatan Harapan coalition, led by Mr Anwar, has around 88 MPs.
Proposing a “war Cabinet” focusing on nation recovery, United Malays National Organisation president Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said the party was “considering several candidates” and called for all MPs to give their support.
On Monday, Mr Muhyiddin was appointed caretaker prime minister after his resignation was accepted by the king.
The palace said that for the people's safety, calling for a general election during the COVID-19 pandemic was not the best option.